If you’re planning a festive feast this year, why not throw out the rule book and cook something totally unexpected? A vegetarian centrepiece from Yotam Ottolenghi will not only help you cut down on your meat consumption and minimize food waste, it will also guarantee an exciting, flavour-packed, and deliciously different meal. And who knows? It may even be the beginning of a new annual tradition. Read on for our selection of three Christmas dinner-worthy Ottolenghi recipes, chosen from his most recent book Ottolenghi FLAVOUR.
From the book
A guide to unlocking the complex flavour in simple vegetables
With a focus on creative cooking processes and clever ingredient pairing
Including recipes for everything from midweek meals to weekend feasts
This beautifully fragrant dish of paneer-stufed aubergines cooked on a bed of curry and coconut dal has a pleasantly casual feel to it, while still being special enough for a celebratory Christmas meal. You can use shop-bought paneer, but making your own, using Ottolenghi’s straightforward instructions, is easy and very satisfying.
For an intensely flavoursome and visually impactful centrepiece, consider this Chinese-inspired Turnip Cake. The cake, which is actually made using daikon rather than turnip, is flavoured with soy maple nuts, and glazed with maple syrup, soy sauce, and toasted sesame oil. Serve with miso leeks and chive salsa and sweet and sour sprouts for an all-out vegan feast.
This is lasagne, but not as you know it – a decadent, umami-rich bake, made with not one but four different kinds of mushroom for a deep, complex flavour. With double cream, Parmesan, and Pecorino Romano, it’s a dish that feels suitably indulgent as a Christmas main. Conveniently, the ragu can be made in advance, so there’s less for you to do on the day itself.